The DeKalb/Sycamore Chapter of 100 Women Who Care recently chose to support The Gracie Center, a DeKalb-County-based, nonprofit organization that works to improve the lives of adults with disabilities.
“We are extremely grateful to 100 Women Who Care for their generous gift of more than $13,000,” Gracie Center Board Chairwoman Kara Atwater said in a news release. “This gift will allow us to make a difference in the lives of adults with disabilities, many of whom receive no other services.”
The Gracie Center, which is based in Kingston, provides vocational training opportunities for adults from DeKalb County who have intellectual disabilities. The organization is best known for its PopUp Shop, a mobile snack stand that can be seen at festivals and events around the county. There, the crew (the adults who receive services) sells popcorn they have raised from seed, even harvesting and shucking the corn themselves.
Additionally, crew members work with DeKalb County Community Gardens, in particular at the Walnut Grove Farms, planting, tending and harvesting a variety of crops. The crew also receives vocational skills training, participates in programming provided by the YMCA, and learns daily living skills and gets experiences that help them become more independent in their daily lives.
“Our goal is not only to help our crew gain greater vocational skills, but also to make them feel a part of something important and to play an active, visible role in the community,” Atwater said in the news release.
The local chapter of 100 Women Who Care was created in 2014. The organization makes gifts four times a year to nonprofit agencies across the county. Eligible agencies are nominated each quarter by members of the organization and are selected by the membership based upon a brief presentation about the agency by a club member.